Photo by Melody

PlantFiles: Tomato
Lycopersicon lycopersicum 'Jelly Bean'

Family: Solanaceae (so-lan-AY-see-ee) (Info)
Genus: Lycopersicon (ly-koh-PER-see-kon) (Info)
Species: lycopersicum (ly-koh-PER-see-kum) (Info)
Cultivar: Jelly Bean

» View all varieties of Tomatoes

5 members have or want this plant for trade.

8-10 ft. (2.4-3 m)

24-36 in. (60-90 cm)

Sun Exposure:
Full Sun

Parts of plant are poisonous if ingested

Seed Collecting:
N/A: plant does not set seed, flowers are sterile, or plants will not come true from seed

Growing Habit:

Fruit Shape:

Fruit Size:
Small (grape/cherry varieties)

Days to Maturity:
Mid (69-80 days)

Fruit Colors:

Seed Type:
American hybrid

Fresh, salad

Disease Resistance:
Fusarium Wilt (F)
Verticillium Wilt (V)
Tobacco Mosaic (T)

Leaf Type:
Regular Leaf

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6 positives
1 neutral
No negatives

Gardeners' Notes:

Positive donnyczech On Sep 16, 2012, donnyczech from Sioux Falls, SD (Zone 4b) wrote:

I grew one plant this year and had plenty of cherry tomatoes. The fruit is good and perfect for grazing on while I was working in the garden. Not many of them made it inside. The growing season was tough, high temps and no rain, but the plant did well anyway. I planted it in a raised bed surrounded by newspapers and wood chips, which helped to retain moisture. I suggest only growing one plant as is attested by the other people who have commented on this plant. Fairly prolific.

Positive ChiefWolfe On Jul 30, 2012, ChiefWolfe from Elk Grove, CA wrote:

This is my first year growing Jelly Bean. I started with a plant purchased from a big-box store in April. Over this spring and summer, the weather in Northern California has not been a great year for tomatoes. However, once Jelly Bean became happy in in it's raised bed it started to grow at a moderate speed and produced lots of fruit by May. When the weather got warmer, the plant transformed into a giant --- nearly taking over our neighbor's garage wall and fruiting prolifically up to 8-10 above the ground! The fruit is the size of a large cherry tomato with a mild taste. I find it perfect to slice in half and add to green salads. Since I have a very small area to garden, this large plant is probably not the best choice for me but I would recommend it for someone who enough growing space.

Positive Jeanne72 On Oct 13, 2011, Jeanne72 from Round Lake, IL wrote:

I started these plants inside, late (May 1), in a sterile potting medium, with one seed per cup. Almost every single seed took and sprouted within 2-3 weeks time. Once they sprouted, I moved the plants outside to a protected area and then grew short and stocky with regular watering. By the last week of June they were about 3-4 inches in height, with several leaves, not leggy, but lacking nutrition from the sterile mix, and thus starting to have difficulty. I then put them in 3-inch peat pots filled with a mixture of Tomato Tone, Mushroom compost, and soil. I chose the 14 strongest plants, and transplanted in the peat pots into a raised bed, next to the house that gets about 80% sun and is well protected.

Once placed in the bed, the plants took off, growing like mad. Stems grew thick, strong, and very sturdy. As the plants grew they were continously staked. By the first week of September, the plants had reached about 8 feet with super thick stalks, very dense foliage, and zillions of flowers. We did have a wind storm however, which caused all the bamboo steaks to bend and the plants all came forward as a group in the bed. Almost none broke and they continued to grow. The problem however, was that August and September were much cooler than usual, and so fruits grew slowly. On October 12, I began getting rippened fruit. The package of seeds I used was from Botanical Interests and it was supposed to contain red and yellow varieties, however, only yellow appeared in my bed.

The fruit that appeared is incredibly plentiful, but I am sure due to the cool weather has been slow to ripen. Ones that do ripen on the vine completely end up tasting a little mealy and not terribly sweet. Of the handful that riped early - about two weeks ago, they tasted sweeter, which is why I am betting the weather is an issue. I also was slow to cut back buds and smaller fruits, which should have been done back in September, in order to focus the plants energy on the fruit that could be harvested. When I did cut the plants back though, the amount of visible fruit was astounding.

In terms of size, these are closer to the size of a 1-inch cherry. The plants continue to be healthy and strong. However, in the past 2 weeks I have noticed what looks like brown leopard spots on the bottom leaves of the plants. It does not seem to be affecting the plant at all, and in fact, new spouts are continuing to come off the primary vine. The base of some vines are 1-inch around and slightly larger. The green tomatoes that were close to turning color I have brought in the house and am ripening on the kitchen counter. I have hundreds of them.

Would I grow these again? Not sure. The plants should have been started earlier, which is my own fault. What is stopping me though in the taste. The less mealy ones were good, but nothing that stands out like a Chocolate Cherry or a SunGold (other varieties I prefer). I am not against growing them as the plants did so well, but we'll see.

Ripening these off the vine appears to be key in having a good, fresh, flavor. I brought in hundreds of these during the end of October and we had tomatoes all the way up until Thanksgiving. Having figured this out - yes, I would grow them again. They were great to eat plain, in salads, and tossed into pastas.

Neutral BUFFY690 On Apr 14, 2011, BUFFY690 from Prosperity, SC (Zone 7b) wrote:

My 2 year old chose these seed to try, First seedlings dampened off, the next few look great ?. Looking forward to the harvesting

Positive RichHurley On Feb 3, 2008, RichHurley from New Freedom, PA (Zone 6b) wrote:

Just about the sweetest grape tomato I've ever run across. Everyone I share with raves over the flavor. If you're going to grow a grape tomato, this is the one!

Positive gman500 On May 1, 2004, gman500 from Manteca, CA (Zone 9a) wrote:

A fairly large red cherry with an excellent flavor. My favorite red cherry so far. I am growing them again this year.

Positive lupinelover On Jan 17, 2003, lupinelover from Grove City, OH (Zone 6a) wrote:

Very prolific producer. Tomatoes dried well.


This plant has been said to grow in the following regions:

Elk Grove, California
Lawndale, California
Manteca, California
Studio City, California
Longmont, Colorado
Savannah, Georgia
Round Lake, Illinois
Barbourville, Kentucky
Ellicott City, Maryland
Dudley, Missouri
Yonkers, New York
Hickory, North Carolina
New Freedom, Pennsylvania
Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania
Sioux Falls, South Dakota
Canyon, Texas
Leander, Texas

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